Risk decreases at landslide site on Colorado’s Grand Mesa; pond did not spill despite rain | PostIndependent.com

Risk decreases at landslide site on Colorado’s Grand Mesa; pond did not spill despite rain

Mesa County officials decreased risk at the West Salt Creek Landslide site from Level 2 to Level 1 on Monday, June 8.
Chad Thatcher / File Photo |

Mesa County officials downgraded their response to the West Salt Creek Landslide site on Colorado’s Grand Mesa from Level 2 to Level 1 on Monday, June 8. The landslide occurred on May 25, 2014, and it has since been viewed as a dangerous, unstable location.

On Wednesday, June 3, officials decided to transition to a Level 2 alert. Landslide site conditions then indicated the “sag pond” that had formed near the top of the slide from rainwater, snowmelt and other runoff was likely to spill. The Level 2 response designation put residents in low-lying areas on alert that something could happen and they may need to seek higher ground.

Since Wednesday’s designation, though, snowpack in the basin above the landslide diminished. Also, storms that were forecast for the weekend did not produce substantial rain in the landslide area.

Officials spent the past five days engaged in intense, on-site monitoring. Though they noted new water-related features and minor landslide activity, the stability of the slump block does not appear to be deteriorating.

Mesa County officials will continue to actively monitor the landslide area and will elevate the response level again if conditions deteriorate.

U.S. Forest Service restrictions remain in place, and trespassing is prohibited on private property.


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